Race Report: Free to Run Marathon

photo credit: Ben Kimball

photo credit: Ben Kimball

On Saturday, BURCS hosted the second annual Free to Run 50-Miler/Marathon/Half Marathon. Last year, I ran the 50-miler, but this year, I decided to go with the marathon. I had to do the 12.5-mile loop twice (plus a little extra), and it also gave me a 9am start time, as opposed to the 5am start for the 50. Prior to the start, I saw lots of familiar faces. Western Massachusetts has an awesome trail running community, and I highly recommend all of the BURCS’ races!

I was a little sluggish for the first few miles, but my legs woke up for the second big climb. The climb comes about five miles into each loop, and it goes up nearly 800 feet in one mile. That’s legit.

photo credit: Ben Kimball

photo credit: Ben Kimball

I was able to hit the top running and I finished up the first lap in about 2:04. I switched out my bottles and headed out for the second lap. I was still running well and everything was going smoothly. I was using this race as my trial run for Oil Creek (in a few weeks) and everything clicked with my shoes, gear, hydration, nutrition, etc. Of course, for Oil Creek, I will need it to click for another 74 miles… but one thing at a time. Anyhow, I finished first in the marathon in 4:10:51.

As you can see, it’s an extremely difficult course. With that being said, there were some amazing performances throughout the day!! This course is not one to be trifled with, even for experienced trail runners, which made some of the finishes on Saturday that much more impressive.

Many thanks to the RDs, aid station volunteers and other runners. Also, big shout-outs to Ben, Frank and anyone else I may have forgotten. If you are looking for a challenging trail race in 2017, this may be the one for you!

Next up for me is Ragnar ADK on Friday! I’m really looking forward to my first run with Strong Hearts Vegan Power. Check back next week to hear all about it!

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One Response to Race Report: Free to Run Marathon

  1. Pingback: 2016 Year in Review | Must Love Jogs

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